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Charges Finally Laid in Whistler Dog Killings

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  • Charges Finally Laid in Whistler Dog Killings

    I'm a little reluctant to post on this it's still a sensitive subject and with good reason.

    I note that the owner of the company funded the new the sled dog code of practice so in effect the company bought it's way out of trouble-no such luck for the poor stupid bastard who killed those animals-what a stinking mess!

    Charges of mass slaughter laid in Whistler sled dogs case

    Charges have been laid against Bob Fawcett, the former general manager of the Whistler-based Howling Dog Tours

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    VANCOUVER — A charge has been laid against Bob Fawcett, the former general manager of Whistler-based Howling Dog Tours, for causing unnecessary pain and suffering to sled dogs killed in a mass slaughter in April 2010.

    Fawcett's first court appearance is scheduled for May 24 in Pemberton Provincial Court.

    The charge approval is a huge step toward justice for the sled dogs, who lost their lives after demand for sled tours dropped following the 2010 Olympics, said Marcie Moriarty, general manager of cruelty investigations for the BC SPCA.

    "We're very pleased the Crown has approved these charges," she said Friday.

    "It was the largest and most complex, I would venture, animal cruelty case in Canada."

    The investigation, which included a team of forensic investigators, cost more than $250,000 and resulted in a new sled dog code of practice, which was adopted two months ago, Moriarty said.

    "It had far-reaching implications," she said of the investigation.

    The organization is hoping the new provincial code of practice will serve as a model for treatment of working dogs across Canada, Moriarty said.

    She doesn't expect any further charges to arise out of the incident, adding that animal cruelty charges can only be laid under the Criminal Code against the person who killed the dogs.

    "It's always been legal to kill your animal," Moriarty explained. "It just has to be done humanely."

    Details of the mass killing of sled dogs were leaked to media last year after Fawcett filed a successful claim with WorkSafeBC, saying the cull left him with post-traumatic stress disorder.

    Fawcett also posted details on a PTSD website, describing how the panicked animals were shot or had their throats slit before being dumped in a mass grave. Fawcett said he was complying with an order from Whistler dog sled tour operator Outdoor Adventures to do a mass cull of the animals when demand for tours dropped after the 2010 Winter Olympics.

    His disclosures sparked an investigation by the B.C. SPCA and resulted in the bodies of 54 dogs being exhumed from their graves near Whistler, using a team of veterinarians and forensic scientists.

    "The incident drew international outrage, but at the time of the investigation some members of the public didn't understand why we had to go through the extensive process of exhuming the bodies when Bob Fawcett had already described his actions," Moriarty said.

    "In order to move forward with criminal charges in the case, we had to produce clear evidence linking an individual to the crime as well as physical proof that the animals suffered unnecessarily, as outlined in the Criminal Code. Without that verification we could not present a case to Crown counsel."

    Many of the forensic experts volunteered their expertise for the operation, Moriarty said.

    The BC SPCA was also a key contributor to a B.C. government task force created last year to examine ways to ensure more humane treatment of sled dogs and to draft the sled dog code of practice, which was adopted in February this year.

    The BC SPCA is planning a memorial for the slain dogs this summer.

    "We have handled the remains of the dogs with the utmost respect and dignity and will be releasing details of the memorial soon," Moriarty said.

    "By uncovering the truth, we have spoken out for these animals. We hope that they will finally be able to rest in peace."

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    Last edited by Dogbreath; 04-21-2012, 07:05 PM.

  • #2
    Add the cost of prosecution, legal aid, court costs, hidden expenses etc etc etc to the $250,000 already spent on the investigation I'd guess at least another $250,000 for a $500,000 total.